New York Times Writer Suggests That Progressives Use Mockery to Defeat Trump. Here's Why That Won't Work

AP Photo/Steve Helber
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President Donald Trump does a little dance as he leaves the stage during a campaign rally Friday, Sept. 25, 2020, in Newport News, Va. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)



The New York Times’ Nicholas Kristof made a rather interesting recommendation on Saturday to progressives seeking to defeat President Donald Trump in November. In a piece titled “To Beat Trump, Mock Him,” the author indicated that using more humor in their rhetorical attacks against the President would be the key to beating him because it has worked against “authoritarian rulers” in the past. 

Please hold your laughter until the end of the article. 

In the piece, Kristof likens Trump to several authoritarian dictators who ruled their countries with an iron fist and notes how satirists and cartoonists used humor to destroy their reputations. He recommends using a similar tactic with Trump, who he sees as a potential Supreme Leader. “Most Americans don’t have much experience confronting authoritarian rulers, but people around the globe are veterans of such struggles,” he writes. “And the most important lesson arguably is ‘laughtivism’: the power of mockery.”

He continues, asserting that, “Denouncing dictators has its place, but sly wit sometimes deflates them more effectively. Shaking one’s fist at a leader doesn’t win people over as much as making that leader a laughingstock.”

Kristof then complains that despite the left’s best rhetorical attacks, Trump seems unfazed. He writes:

“American progressives have learned by now that frontal attacks aren’t always effective against Trump. Impeaching Trump seemed to elevate him in the polls. A majority of Americans agree in a Quinnipiac poll that Trump is a racist, yet he still may win re-election. Journalists count Trump’s deceptions (more than 20,000 since he assumed the presidency) and chronicle accusations of sexual misconduct against him (26 so far), yet he seems coated with Teflon: Nothing sticks.”


The author is right, of course. Progressives have pulled out all the stops in their efforts to destroy his presidency, and every single one of them has failed so far. Kristof offers humor as a solution that may succeed where other strategies have failed. 

In the article, the author points to examples like Slobodan Milosevic in Serbia and President Jacob Zuma in South Africa. Both men were vicious rulers and both had opponents who used humor to undermine their authority. “That’s one gauge of the power of humor: Dictators fear mockery,” Kristof insists. “The Committee to Protect Journalists says it has intervened this year alone to defend seven cartoonists around the world who were arrested, threatened with prosecution or threatened with death.”

However, Kristof ends up unknowingly identifying the very reason why his proposed strategy will be about as effective as filling an Olympic-sized pool with an eyedropper. He wrote:

“I’m also frustrated that some forceful criticisms of Trump sometimes come across to undecided voters as strident or over the top. People like me are accused of suffering from Trump Derangement Syndrome, and our arguments are dismissed precisely because they are so fervent.”

No, Mr. Kristof, people like yourself aren’t “accused of suffering from Trump Derangement Syndrome,” because they are so “fervent.” You are the subject of this accusation because your arguments are so stupid


This is the point that far-left progressives miss over and over again. The reason why they can’t land a knockout punch on President Trump is that the conduct on the far left is so skull-hammeringly ludicrous and outlandish that the President looks sane by comparison. 

Let’s take Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination to the Supreme Court, for example. Right now, progressives are literally attempting to persuade the American public to believe that a religious group to which she belonged was the basis of the novel and popular TV show, “The Handmaid’s Tale.” They truly believe they can smear her as a theocratic autocrat who will enforce her religious convictions on the court. 

Anytime President Trump so much as sneezes, progressives in the government and the media fall all over themselves to use it as a smear against him and his associates. Their nonsensical overreactions remove any standing they might have to make fun of a president who should be easy to poke fun at. In fact, while many Americans aren’t too fond of Trump’s personality, the left behaves in a way that makes people want to defend him.

This video made by We The Internet exemplifies this reality perfectly:



In fact, in writing this article, Kristof has made the same type of mistake that makes it impossible to take him seriously when he compares Trump to some of the most brutal dictators in modern history. The notion that the President has anything significant in common with these figures is outright comical. But people like Nicholas Kristof just can’t help themselves, can they?


The author is right, mockery is a powerful political weapon. It’s why Saul Alinsky was so fond of it. But for mockery to be an effective tactic, the people using it can’t be more insane than the target of their ire, and this is what progressives seem to forget. But, it is fun to watch them try, isn’t it? 


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